Mr McConnell, saying he had hoped for a “different result” in the election, also said, “All Americans can take pride that our nation has a female vice president-elect for the very first time.”
Since early November, Mr McConnell has ignored pressure to acknowledge Mr Biden’s victory, saying Mr Trump had the right to pursue legal challenges to the election outcome. He steadfastly refused to refer to Biden as president-elect.
Meanwhile, many of Mr McConnell’s fellow Republicans have echoed Mr Trump’s unfounded claims that the presidential election was stolen by domestic and foreign forces, including by tampering with electronic voting machines.
Over the past five weeks, some local elections officials have expressed fears that President Trump’s rhetoric and that of some of his supporters could result in violence.
On Monday, the Electoral College confirmed results that were apparent since the 7th of November that Mr Trump had no path to winning the election despite his repeated, unfounded claims of election fraud, which he reiterated on Monday.
Mr Trump’s verbal and Twitter attacks, a flurry of mostly unsuccessful lawsuits and public rallies in which he spoke of an illegal election result raised fears that US democracy could suffer if enough Americans believed the president’s accusations of fraud.
Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, in a speech following Mr McConnell’s, urged Mr Trump to “end his term with a modicum of grace and dignity.”
“For the sake of our democracy, for the sake of peaceful transition of power, he should stop the shenanigans, stop the misrepresentations and acknowledge that Joe Biden will be our next president,” Mr Schumer said.
While Mr McConnell congratulated Mr Biden and Ms Harris, he made no mention of whether he would work in a cooperative manner with any of the new administration’s initiatives following their swearing-in on the 20 January.